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Discussion Starter #1
So, the story goes like this. I had a Yani S992 and loved the tone but had some nagging problems that I got tired of dealing with so I sold it. I bought a Yamaha 875EX which is a wonderful horn but I still missed the warm sound of my bronze Yani. My teacher has been remodeling my basement for me and we decided to do the downstairs bathroom too. He mentioned a price and then said that I could give him my soprano in trade. I initially said no but then got to thinking about how I'd like to try another Yani. Plus I have a credit account at ProWinds. So, I went about deciding whether to get a S902 or a curvy S992. I ended up ordering the S902 and got it on Tuesday. It's on a 7-day trial. I have to say, I might have been totally wrong about my initial impression of Yanagisawa. This horn plays so nice and the warmth of the bronze is exactly what I am looking for. Since I never used the curved necks on my other horns, I figured the one piece design of the 902 would be just right. I am experiencing NONE of the problems I had on my S992. I'm convinced that was a bad horn. This 902 has no sticky C pad, no buzzing high notes, really nothing wrong at all. The only thing I noticed is when I press the octave key, it actually pushes in a little farther sometimes and makes kind of a squeak. I'm sure that is some kind of adjustment but I can't figure out what it would be. Can anyone maybe shed some light on that?

The long-winded story is so people don't think I'm a nut about buying horns. OK, maybe I am but I am having the time of my life. :) I'd probably keep both as a collector, but I'll need the cash for my basement. After I make 100% sure the Yani is "the one" I'll probably offer up the EX to my teacher and if he changes his mind sell it here or eBay.

FWIW, I came REALLY close to ordering the SC992. I'm not really sure what stopped me. I guess maybe fear that it wouldn't play as freely as a straight horn.
 

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Forum Contributor 2015, SOTW Better late than neve
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I know I didn't understand what or why you didn't like about the Yani you had. But OTOH, there's always a bad apple in the bunch. So I'm glad you've come full circle. The curvy isn't any less "free" than a strait horn. Plus, you can hear it better.

Enjoy
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The 992 I had was just not right for some reason. The 'C' pad was CONSTANTLY sticking no matter what my tech did. Plus I was always getting this buzz on certain high notes. The whole horn just didn't seem quite right even though I loved the tone. I came to the conclusion that I am doing this for enjoyment and decided to unload the horn and picked up the 875EX. I've loved my EX since the day I got it. But, since the offer by my teacher, the prospect of going back to Yani became very tempting.
 

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Congrats on the S902. I'm not convinced that a bronze Yanagisawa is any warmer than a brass one, having owned several. Still, they are gorgeous in bronze and if that trips your trigger, well - you'll like it better.

I'm coming to believe the fixed-neck Yanagisawas are superior to the dual neck models. My experiencve so far is that while my S992 is a really nice horn (and doesn't have the problems you mentioned - sounds like a silver Serie III I once owned), my S901 has the best intonation I've ever experienced in a soprano.

My S901 can sound as warm as my S992 when I use an appropriate mouthpice. My SC902 is not all that warm in tone, though. The curved horn has a harshness to it even as well as it plays. True, I CAN hear it better, especially in loud environments, but I prefer the straight models.

One thing I'm discovering with my S901 is the high-octave vent becomes filled with moisture after I play a while. This is because the vent is on the underside of the tube and seems to be in the water-stream whereas the dual-neck S992 has its upper octave vent on the top of the tube, out of the stream.

When going for the notes at A2 and above, the upper vent opens and a bubble of moisture forms between the pad and the vent-opening. Some mouthpieces seem to blow past this situation okay while others cut-out at that point because the vent is essentially closed by water. I have yet to come up with a solution except to use my Super Session J on this horn rather than my Morgan Vintage 7 mouthpiece. DAVE
 

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Thanks Dave, I thought it was me! Mayho
 

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Tom: I recall you mentioning this problem to me a while back. I think the mouthpiece can help - much like good chops can play the octave without using the octave mechanism, a certain focused mouthpiece (in my case the Super Session J) will allow me to get those notes even if the vent is closed by a water bubble. Have you tried your various mouthpieces to "blow through" the clogged vent? DAVE
 

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patseguin said:
The 992 I had was just not right for some reason. The 'C' pad was CONSTANTLY sticking no matter what my tech did. Plus I was always getting this buzz on certain high notes. The whole horn just didn't seem quite right even though I loved the tone. I came to the conclusion that I am doing this for enjoyment and decided to unload the horn and picked up the 875EX. I've loved my EX since the day I got it. But, since the offer by my teacher, the prospect of going back to Yani became very tempting.
I presume that you are talking abou the little slave key on the upper stack...on sopranos I always use cork on both of these (often it's a double stacked key) and have no problems...a little more setup hassle, but once it's done...it's done forever.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Yeah, it's the pad on top of another pad with a hole in it. On this horn it has not stuck once.

Well, my teacher can't take my EX off my hands. He needs the money and he said he has to buy a clarinet first. I guess I'll take the weekend and play both and decide what I want to do. I'll probably end up selling the EX so I can have the cash for my remodeling. This 902 plays really, really good too...
 

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Yani soprano reliability

The yani sopranos seem to always wow people when they have no issues, but can really be a pain when something is wrong. And usually, it is not easy to figure out what is wrong. As some may know, I had to sell my S901 because it was giving me problems, similar in nature to Patseguin's. I played another S901 during that time period at Kessler's,and that played okay with no problems. But out of the morbid fear of getting another yani soprano with an attitude problem, I recently got a PM instead.

As Dave mentioned, I also experienced the moisture trapping in the octave key incidents, and that drove me crazy also.

Now, I wonder what would happen if someone got one of the dual neck yani models, and welded the neck to the body to make a single body soprano. Given that the Antigua A590LQ is allegedly a reversed engineering model of the S991/S992 series, and it gave me no problems when I had mine, I am tempted to make a S991/S981 soprano a single body soprano.
But I'll let GAS kick in first; it is currently in remission.
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Anyone care to ponder how the SC992 would play in comparison to the S902? I have a day left on my trial and sort of want to try the curvy just to see how I like it.

EDIT: Prowinds has to order the SC992, which takes 3-4 weeks. I'm not willing to return the 902, so I guess I'll have to try a curvy some time in the future.
 

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Patseguin,

Congrats - I've mentioned in other post that I had the same problems with an S992 as well. Very frustrating - sold the horn and NEVER looked back.

As far as Curvies go - I've tried several on and off over the past few years and find the TONE to IN-MY-FACE. From the audience perspective, it probably sounds the same as a straight horn.- The sound was too Loud for my own ears.

It might be best to try ANY curvy just to get a sense of the volume difference to the performer.

LET ME BE CLEAR TO AVOID AN ARGUMENT: The Curvy only sounded louder to ME the performer.
 

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I agree about the tonal quality of curved sops, even though I got in to it about that with the distinguished Paul Cohen on this board. Curved sops ARE loud to the player . . . and the sound coming from a bell so close to the player also provides tonal artifacts to the player that are normally not heard by others. Play a straight sop into a mirror with the bell close to the hard surface and you will hear similar tonal artifacts as those that you hear from a curved sop.

My SC902 sounds edgy and harsh to my ears and that distracts me. But on recordings I've made with it, who knew?

However, out front, sopranos sound like a soprano regardless of the shape of the horn.

The curved vs. straight discussions have gone on and on and will continue to do so. To me, there are two advantages to curved sops . . . 1) travel convenience in cars with small trunks and commercial air travel; and 2) the player is able to hear the horn better in amplified environments. DAVE
 

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I'm sure, as a listener, closed-eyes, I can hear (feel) the difference.
I can't explain what it is but there is something more ... straight (actually) in the straight soprano sound. Curved soprano's sound give the feeling to be more spread, less accurate.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Hey Dave, everywhere I look I see SC992 but never a SC902. It must be a 992 that you have? In any event, I think I am going to be content and not mess with getting into a curved soprano.
 

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We have 2 staight sopranos,a selmer s-80 II and a Conn 94m taiwan cheapie. Wew have one curvie a Yanagisawa SC-991. The Yanagisawa sounds a little brighter than the Selmer s-80II. I beleive a staight Yani would be brighter as well. My daughter(age 9 goping on 10) loves the curvie as it is easier to handle than a staight soprano. I have heard her play both straight and curved and both sound quite similar. I really like the Yani curvie(sometimes my fingers hit the bell while playing rapid passages or I get carried away really jamming out on it!!!) but prefer a straight soprano. My Selmer s-80 II G# key and the double pad on the C have stuck since day one!!!I love the tone of the Selmer so I just live w/ it!!!;)
 

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Silvin: If you can tell the difference without looking, wow! I've been in the audience when other players performed with curved sops and they just sounded good, not curved or straight. The differences you hear may well be within the normal range of differences that nearly all saxophones have, and not attributable to their shape.

With many straight modern sops with fixed necks, the upper octave vent is on the lower half of the tube, in the moisture stream. My vintage straight Bueschers have the vent on the side of the tube, out of the moisture stream. Removable neck sops most always have that vent on the top side of the neck, out of the moisture stream. Thus a removable-neck sop should not suffer from the upper octave vent being blocked by moisture.

As much as I like the S901 overall, I'm not ready to claim it is because of the fixed neck. But, I have yet to play a modern soprano that has the upper end (above A2) power and clarity of my vintage Bueschers. Even my removable neck sops don't have the power of the TT.

So, I doubt if welding/soldering a removable neck onto a dual-neck soprano would achieve anything but eliminating the constant installation and removal of the neck. I DO like the simplicity of the S901. DAVE
 

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patseguin said:
Hey Dave, everywhere I look I see SC992 but never a SC902. It must be a 992 that you have? In any event, I think I am going to be content and not mess with getting into a curved soprano.
The 901/902 have been replaced w/ the 991/992 series. The differance is that the sc-901/902 had a pinky cluster on the left hand similar to the selmer mark VI and had the bell keys on the left hand side. The SC-991/992s have a tilting Bb spatula(left pinky cluster) and the bell keys on the right. USA horn has a mint SC-902. Here's the link: http://usahorn.com/instView.usa?id=63&inst=Yanagisawa+SC-902+Curved+Soprano+Sax+Bronze&newArr=63 The curved sopranos are definete crowd pleasers!!!!Everyone thinks our SC-991 is cute and alot of folks think it is a baby alto.
 

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I think curvies sound and play no differant than their staight brethen. It is just a differant twist on sopranos. If some ways the curvies are alot of maketing hype. They are advertised often that they have a alto sax tonality to them and feel more like the rest of the sax family then their staight brethen. This is WRONG!!!!They sound like a soprano and our SC-991 feels no more like a alto(itr might feel like a alto if the neck was bent at a 90 degree angle/neck is bent but more like a 45 angle) then the 2 straight sopranos we have,. The little one does like the curved neck(on the SC-991) that reduces the stress and weight put on her right wrist.
 

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I agree with sycc. The SC902 is merely a curved soprano of the older Yanagisawa design and with a lacquered bronze body rather than the lacquered brass body of the SC901. In any of Yanagisawa's model designations, the "2" means bronze, not brass ("1"). DAVE
 

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I came to the same conclusion about curved sopranos being 'in your face', but there is one really good use for them. They are very good in electric situations where you are being miked. They act as their own monitor, and the mike very well, giving an excellent sound in the PA with a single microphone. I find that with straight sopranos, two microphones are needed to get a satisfying sound...I can use a clip-on with the curvy (mine's a Cannonball Global Big Bell). For everything else, it's my S990 lacquer...
 
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